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Four COVID clusters under investigation

Four COVID clusters under investigation
Minister of Health Jeffrey Bostic. (FILE)

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Four COVID-19 clusters are being investigated by public health officials in Barbados on the West Coast, South Coast, at Her Majesty’s Prison Dodds and the Boxing Day Bus Crawl.

Speaking during Tuesday’s COVID-19 management update, Minister of Health Jeffrey Bostic said the process of contact tracing was continuing as they sought to bring this outbreak under control.

At the time of speaking, the West Coast cluster had 86 positive cases and two people are associated with 25 positive results. One bar had 27, the Paradise Beach Lime had 18, two restaurants accounted for 11 and five respectively, there were seven from a catamaran cruise, six and five cases, respectively from two hotels and there are 33 positive cases from other businesses.

Bostic said three cases from a church in the north were also linked to this cluster.

There are four positive cases from the South Coast cluster.

At Dodds, there are 228 cases. These comprise 58 staff and 170 male inmates. There are also three pending positives among staff and 64 among the inmates.

The 16 cases of the COVID-19 virus associated with a bus craw event held on December 26, 2020, were positively linked through contract tracing to more than 200 cases at Dodds, discovered in the past two weeks, which led Government officials to classify the excursion as a super spreader.

Bostic said the Best-dos Santos Public Health Laboratory conducted 974 tests on Monday. These resulted in 84 positive results, 75 males and nine females. Of that 84, 67 are from Dodds while the other 17 comprise locals and visitors.

The index cases are still being identified and Bostic cautioned that contact tracing wasn’t being done solely to identify where the outbreak started, but to prevent further spread.  (SAT)